Being of the Same Mind

While discussing the meaning of the cross in our lives of faith our Lenten study class ran right into one of the most challenging of New Testament passages out there. Here it is, as presented in various translations:

New International Version

In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:

New Living Translation
You must have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had.

English Standard Version
Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus,

Berean Study Bible
Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus:

Berean Literal Bible
Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus:

New American Standard Bible
Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus,

King James Bible
Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus:

Christian Standard Bible
Adopt the same attitude as that of Christ Jesus,

Contemporary English Version
and think the same way that Christ Jesus thought:

Good News Translation
The attitude you should have is the one that Christ Jesus had:

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Make your own attitude that of Christ Jesus,

What is it talking about? That we should adopt the same humble servant attitude that Jesus had – and thus be totally obedient to our Father in heaven’s call on our lives – which, for Jesus, meant death on the cross.

Like I said – challenging to say the least.

What followed in our study was a good discussion about what it means to have Christ’s attitude in our daily lives; what it means to suffer as he did; is such suffering even possible for us, and so on.

What do you think? As you walk this year’s Lenten path, how are you called to “be of the same mind as Christ Jesus” and how does that impact your life in real, practical – and perhaps, very difficult ways?

By Paul Simrell

The Reverend Paul W. Simrell has served for over thirty years in a variety of congregational and institutional settings. He is a recognized minister with standing in the Virginia region of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada and is nationally endorsed by the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) for specialized ministry in both pastoral counseling and chaplaincy. Ordained in 1982, he has served congregations in Kentucky, Texas, Florida, and Virginia. He currently serves as the pastor of Elpis Christian Church, a small, historic congregation located just a few miles west of Richmond, Virginia. Elpis is the Greek word meaning “expectant hope.” He also serves on the associate clinical staff of the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care, Richmond, Virginia, both as a pastoral counselor and a ministerial assessment specialist, specializing in executive, clergy and relationship coaching. He is a graduate of the University of Florida and Lexington Theological Seminary and has done advanced clinical training in chaplaincy and pastoral counseling at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington, Kentucky, Children’s Medical Center and Parkland Hospital in Dallas, Texas and the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care in Richmond, Virginia. He is a Certified Pastoral Counselor, an ACPE Practitioner, and a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors. He is a Certified Facilitator of the Prepare-Enrich relationship assessment and skills-building program and served as a volunteer chaplain for over twenty years with the CJW Medical Center campuses in Richmond, Virginia. His avocational interests include playing the piano and drawing. He is very happily married to his wife Elizabeth Yeamans Simrell, a free-lance writer, who is also a Certified Facilitator for the Prepare-Enrich program. Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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